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7-Eleven assessing expansion of foreign exchange services

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7-Eleven assessing expansion of foreign exchange services

Taipei, Jan. 30 (CNA) President Chain Store Corp. is considering whether to exchange currencies other than the Chinese yuan at its 7-Eleven convenience stores, the company said Friday, amid questions on why 7-Eleven's currency exchange services covered only the yuan. The company said it was not ruling out the possibility of increasing the number of outlets offering such services, especially in tourist areas such as scenic Kenting or night markets. A lawmaker with the opposition Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU, ??) has criticized the convenience chain's move to exchange the Chinese currency, calling it "extremely inappropriate." TSU Legislator Lai Cheng-chang (???) acknowledged that stores and services in scenic spots in Taiwan, such as Sun Moon Lake in central Taiwan, accept Chinese yuan but said the practice is illegal. "If Taiwan one day allows Chinese yuan transactions openly and legally, it will signal a further move toward unification with China," Lai said. He also contended that convenience stores are a major part of daily life around Taiwan, and if they were linked to the Chinese yuan, it could have serious consequences for the nation's security.
"If there are no curbs on this, Taiwan's financial system and commodity price could be affected," he said. TSU Legislator Chou Ni-an (???) warned that counterfeit currency is common in China and wondered if 7-Eleven clerks could recognize fake bills.
President Chain Store announced a day earlier that starting Feb. 1, three of its 7-Eleven outlets in Taipei will accept Chinese yuan in exchange for Taiwan dollars, but not the other way around, from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. The company said individuals could exchange up to 20,000 Chinese yuan per day, but it would only accept 100-yuan denominated bills and charge a processing fee of NT$40 per transaction. It pledged to step up the training of its workers to expand the service as more overseas visitors come to Taiwan. The convenience store chain, the biggest in Taiwan, has a standard operating procedure for handling the currency exchange service and has installed devices in its outlets to verify the authenticity of the foreign banknotes, it said. Another major convenience chain in Taiwan has offered currency exchange services since 2012. FamilyMart said it currently has three outlets -- two in Taipei and another on scenic Alishan in Chiayi -- that offer 24-hour foreign currency services and do not charge processing fees. The company said demand for the service is greatest in its Alishan outlet, with six out of every 10 Chinese visiting the store wanting to change money. Yet another convenience store, Hi-Life, said it is planning to provide currency exchange services to serve Chinese visitors and may also begin allowing Chinese customers to use e-Wallet services to make payments, or cooperate with China's Alipay. Taiwan had more than 9.9 million overseas visitors in 2014, with just under 40 percent of them coming from mainland China. (By Chen Cheng-wei and Lilian Wu)


Updated : 2021-09-21 20:21 GMT+08:00